Dog Safety in Pickup Trucks

September 23, 2011 by Jillian at Tails in Home with 0 Comments

dog in truckThe ASPCA recently released an article talking about the dangers of putting your dog in the back of your pickup truck while driving. The article talks about a young woman who had to euthanize her young dog after he sustained severe injuries by jumping out of the back of a pickup truck while it was moving.

Unfortunately stories like these occur far too often.

“When you drive with a loose dog in the back of your truck, you’re taking a huge risk and placing your dog and other motorists in danger,” says Chuck Mai, a vice president with AAA Oklahoma. “Even if a dog is trained, we’re talking about an animal who responds to stimuli on impulse. This irresponsible decision can start a deadly chain reaction on the road.”

The good news is accidents such as these can be avoided by following some simple pet safety travel tips.

  • Never allow your pet to ride in the back of a pickup truck. No matter what distance you are traveling it’s never safe to let your dog roam loose in the back of your truck. Most accidents occur within five miles of your home and you would never want your pet to be injured or killed by putting him/her at risk in this way.
  • Always restrain your pet in a vehicle. Have your pet ride in the cab with you and buckle them up! According to AAA, only 16 percent of pet guardians use proper safety restraints for their pets in vehicles. A proper-fitting harness restraint system or a pet carrier that is tied down are often the best options.

AAA recommends that pet owners restrain their pet inside the vehicle not only to avoid distraction, but to protect the animal and other passengers in a crash. While barrier systems are an acceptable way to reduce the potential distraction of a pet inside the vehicle, they offer little to no protection in a crash. A harness-restraint system used in the back seat is one option to reduce animal movement, as well as a crate that is strapped down.

Not only is putting your dog in the back of a pickup extremely dangerous, it’s also illegal in many states and cities. The best thing to do if you see a dog loose in the back of a truck is to write down the license plate and call your local police (Do not call 911).


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